The Montreal Market: Blog and News
Blog entries will be posted in the language in which they were written.
August 28th, 2017

Reverse mortgages could backfire as mortgage rates rise!

Posted by Joan McGuigan

Personal Investor: Reverse mortgages could backfire with higher rates – Article – BNN According to Dale Jackson

Reverse mortgages have been a godsend over the past two decades for many seniors who are short on investments and heavy on home equity. Skyrocketing house prices have allowed them to tap into the value of their homes for day-to-day living expenses.

But as interest rates rise they may find the burden of a reverse mortgage too heavy.

Here’s how a reverse mortgage basically works: Homeowners can borrow up to 55 per cent of the appraised value of their homes. The remaining equity is used by the lender as collateral. Payment for that loan isn’t due until you no longer live in the house, whether you move out, put the house up for sale, or you’ve died.

Higher mortgage rates mean higher interest payments. The big difference is a regular mortgage gets smaller over time, decreasing the amount of compound interest. With reverse mortgages, interest compounds in reverse – increasing the total debt as that interest generates more interest, and so on.

Like regular mortgages, reverse mortgages are available over many fixed time periods. However, the rates on reverse mortgages tend to be higher.

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April 7th, 2017

What is the added value of a garage in Montreal?

Posted by Joan McGuigan

When selling a property in Montreal on the Island or in the city and Westmount adjacent, the Quebec Federation of Real Estate Boards census results show that the presence of a garage increases the average value of a home between 8 and 11 percent depending on the area. Also another interesting fact from their results is that a second garage adds as much as 25 percent to the value of the home. As well, a second parking space adds 14 percent vs one parking space adds 11 percent. Contact me for results of other major cities in Quebec vis-a-vis the added value of a garage.

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November 3rd, 2016

Daylight Saving Time Reminder-Fall back; Please adjust your clocks back one hour this weekend

Posted by Joan McGuigan
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November 3rd, 2016

Highlights of Century 21 40th Anniversary Conference in Vancouver

Posted by Joan McGuigan

October 28-30, 2016 | Westin Bayshore Hotel | Vancouver, BC
Nearly 600 brokers, managers and owners came together to celebrate our 40th anniversary in Vancouver, the city where it all started for CENTURY 21 Canada!
Featuring renowned real estate coach & NY Times best-selling author, Tom Ferry. Plus, enhanced networking events, hands-on education, & more!
It was a great opportunity to interact with our fellow System members on the official Facebook page and enjoy the best Canada Conference yet! Next year it will be in Quebec City. Can’t wait to see all my friends and colleagues again! Brian and I had an amazing time, albeit short but hugely successful.

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August 1st, 2014

Terrific Moving Tips When Moving Your Home

Posted by Joan McGuigan

Who can’t use some moving tips when they’re packing up their whole life for a new home? If you’re among thousands of people who have picked up and moved their family to a new home or a new community, you have fresh memories of some of the ups and downs or thrills or frustrations of moving.
Drawing from recent personal experience, I know there are lots of ways to help make your household move easier and more smooth. Read here for help to get your life, and your possessions, organized for a peaceful and exciting move.
Make a list.
Write everything down! You’ll thank yourself later. Before you pack even one box, create a simple record keeping system. Create a computer-printed list of numbers with a space to write the contents. Or have a spiral-bound notebook for the job. You’ll place a number on EVERY box you pack and list the contents on your list. Don’t put the list down unless it’s in a place you’ll call Packing Central. This is where you’ll find your labels, marking pens, box tape, and other supplies. When describing the box contents, be specific — “A-D files” is better than “files”, and “Tulip dishes” rather than “misc. kitchen”.
Have plenty of supplies.
You’ll need LOTS of boxes–probably more boxes than you think, and having enough boxes will make your life easier! (If you buy your boxes from a moving company, you can always return unused boxes for a refund. If you got them free from the grocery, just toss any leftovers.) Have about 10 boxes set aside to use for last minute items on moving day, such as bedding, clothing, and cleaning supplies. You’ll need strong plastic packing tape to close up the boxes securely. Use unprinted newsprint (newspaper can stain your items) or packing paper or bubble wrap to wrap and cushion household good. Return any unused supplies after the truck is packed.
Utilize wardrobe boxes.
These tall boxes are perfect for bulky, lightweight items such as comforters, pillows, and blankets, as well as clothes that need to remain hanging. Call your mover to ask the width of the wardrobe boxes they’ll be bringing. Then measure the clothes in your closets (including coat closets) to see how many wardrobe boxes you’ll need. You can also use them for closet storage boxes, shoe boxes, and other bulky items such as fabric bolts, large baskets, or gift wrap tubes.
Strategize wardrobe box use.
Moving companies will be happy to deliver boxes ahead of your moving day. Or if you’re doing the move yourself, get things organized as early as possible. A few days before your move, fill some sturdy handled shopping bags with bulky closet items such as shoes, sweaters, belts, and jeans. On moving day, fill the bottom of the wardrobe boxes with some of the shopping bags, then add your hanging clothing. Pack hanging items tightly so things won’t move around and fall off of hangers. Finally, cover the shoulders of your clothes (a dry cleaning bag works well), then add a few purses or sweaters on top. You’ll have fewer boxes, and closet items remain together. Also, the shopping bags will make it easier to retrieve your belongings from the bottoms of a tall wardrobe box.
Color coordinate.
Designate a color for each room in the new home, such as yellow for kitchen, orange for dining room, etc. Apply colored stickers on the box near the box number. In your new home, put a matching sticker on the door to each room. The movers will know where to put everything when they arrive at the destination. It’s also helpful to post a big sign on the wall in the room where you want boxes stacked, (“Boxes here please”) to keep them out of furniture and traffic areas.
Happy Moving!

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July 12th, 2013

Spending a day in Hochelaga Maisonneuve

Posted by Joan McGuigan

December 12, 2011 ─ With expansive green spaces and loads of attractions surrounding the Olympic Park, the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district (that’s “HoMa” if you’re a Montrealer) is filled with cultural, historical, and natural treasures. Like most of Montréal, this area is safe and can easily be navigated by foot (sporty types might want to jog around the Olympic Park following this path). Whatever you’re into, you can count on HoMa to deliver. An Olympic Morning You can begin your day by visiting the Olympic Stadium. Built for the 1976 Summer Olympic Games, the Stadium is the Olympic Park’s centrepiece, a bold design by French architect Roger Taillibert. Take the funicular-type elevator to the top three observation floors of the Stadium’s inclined tower, the tallest of its kind in the world, and you’ll get a spectacular view of the city. The athletic centre below the tower contains seven aquatic pools as well as a multi-sport facility. You can also check out the nearby Montréal Biodôme (formerly the Olympic Velodrome), which was converted to house five ecosystems of the Americas and includes over 4,800 animals from 230 different species and 750 plant types. An experienced nature interpreter will accompany you on a journey that takes you through a tropical rainforest, a Laurentian woodland, the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and, finally, the Sub-Antarctic Islands. All this under one roof makes for an incredible experience. A Museum Mansion To view one of city’s most notable examples of Beaux-Arts architecture, head to the Château Dufresne. With plans based on the design of the Petit Trianon in Versailles, France, Parisian Jules Renard built the structure between 1915 and 1918. The Château Dufresne was a private mansion owned by the Dufresne brothers, two important members of Montréal’s French Bourgeoisie, and was originally divided into two separate households for each brother. Today it is a museum dedicated to the history of Montréal’s east end. The building boasts an interior decor painted by artist Guido Nincheri and is testament to some of the tastes of the Roaring Twenties. Nincheri’s workshop, the oldest extant stained-glass studio in Québec, is located at 1832 Pie-IX Boulevard, just four blocks south of the Château Dufresne. An Afternoon Garden Delight With an extensive collection of 22,000 plant species and cultivars, 10 exhibition greenhouses, and several thematic and cultural gardens, the Montréal Botanical Garden is a wondrous haven of beauty and tranquility, and, incidentally, is one of the world’s largest and finest repositories for all things grown from Mother Earth. For a truly unique experience, make your way to the Asian grounds. At the Dream Lake Garden, an authentic Chinese garden inspired by the private estates popular in the southern Yangzi River region during the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), the spatial organization of the pavilions, the selection of plants and minerals, the use of water features, and the contrast of yin and yang are all expressions of the secular principles of the Chinese art of landscape design. Meanwhile, at the Japanese Garden, serenity is achieved through compositional balance. Each tree, shrub, and stone has been carefully chosen and placed, with every item holding symbolic significance. The pond, along with a series of cascades and springs, for example, expresses life and renewal in a deeply poetic manner. Botanical Bites and Boissons To complete this one day jaunt in HoMa, partake in the Botanical Garden’s refreshing summertime spin on the Happy Hour formula, which occurs right on the Garden’s terrace. Botanical cocktails inspired by the colours and species of the Garden’s cultivated plants, as well as tapas, seasonal local fare, and relaxing live music all contribute to this unique appreciation of the splendid setting. Cheers, to you, for a day well-travelled! View comments [0] Add comment This article has not been commented on yet.

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April 10th, 2013

Hochelaga maisonneuve

Posted by Joan McGuigan


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June 22nd, 2012

“Our clients are going places…..

Posted by Joan McGuigan

Well-known Montreal artist, Susan Pepler will be showing her new collection of vintage cars in Knowlton
“As many of you already know …
I have a thing for sparkling vintage cars, especially the ones from Cuba.
Happily for me, my clients love the paintings of them. As they’re just about sold out,
I went back to Havana recently to find some more. What I love about these giant gems is …the joyful colours and incredibly creative designs, their unbelievable endurance, and amazing strength and stamina…”
One of my clients liked them so much she purchased two. Do go and see her exhibition.
featuring New Cuba Cars and Florals

July 21st and 22nd 10am – 6pm
130 Lakeside
Ville de Lac Brome
Quebec, Canada
These incredibly gorgeous gems will look stunning in many of the vintage houses we have for sale at Here is a link to Susan’s website.

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May 18th, 2012

Good to know …

Posted by Joan McGuigan

Blog article – Exterior paintingFrom summer issue of CAA Quebec magazineBlog article – decks and patios

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April 27th, 2012

A tribute to Family Businesses published by Westmount Examiner

Posted by Joan McGuigan

A tribute to Family Businesses

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McGuigan Pepin Real Estate